Daniel Morin, together with his wife Thérèse, had a dream when he took over the reins of Roulottes Desjardins in St-Jerome, Quebec, 41 years ago. His 25 years of experience in the automobile industry, where he had climbed the ladder as a mechanic, foreman, department manager and finally sales manager, was a springboard to acquiring a solid foundation for starting up the business that became Roulottes Desjardins.
That dream propelled him to recognition on Nov. 29 as 2010 Canadian RV Dealer of the Year awarded by the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association of Canada (RVDA of Canada). The award was presented during the 2010 Canada Night Dinner held in Louisville, Ky., on the eve of the 48th Annual National RV Trade Show.
Morin was very moved as his name was called and he graciously accepted his award while surrounded by family and friends, according to a news release.
“Thank you very much for this honor. This is truly an incredible industry and I am very fortunate be a part of it,” said Morin, as Norm Rosen, from RV Lifestyle Magazine, presented him with the Walter Paseska Memorial Canadian RV Dealer of the Year Award.
Morin started with a small dealership located in a mobile home, with only three units on the lot. Today, his dealership inventories more than 250 units and has five service bays. Throughout his stellar career, he has always shown implacable thoroughness and unparalleled concern for a job well done and exceptional customer service. Morin has kept pace with the industry’s evolution and adapted his dealership to stay in tune with economic trends of the day. This has always let him adjust his product lines and dealership focus in order to position his company among the best. His go-getting personality, his expertise and his openness make him a respected figure in the RV industry.
His generous nature and entrepreneurial spirit led him to get involved in founding the Association des commerçants de véhicules récréatifs du Québec/RVDA of Quebec. He has served numerous terms as a director on the provincial board and is a past president of the RVDA of Canada. Morin also served on the Go RVing Canada board for many years. These involvements allowed him to transmit and apply his knowledge to ensure the growth of this industry’s different sectors.
Morin has been so successful at transmitting his passion that his children have also chosen a career in the RV industry and currently work at his 2 dealerships.
Morin and his team also support their community in numerous ways. Every year, he subsidizes and contributes to several campgrounds in the Laurentian region so that outdoor enthusiasts can continue to benefit and enjoy the great RV and Camping lifestyle. Roulottes Desjardins also contributes financially to organizations such as: Fondation de l’hôtel Dieu St-Jérôme et la Fondation Charles Bruneau.
Along with our winner, the nominees for this year’s award were:
- Craig Anstead of Paradise RV, Red Deer County, Alberta.
- Kevin Betzold of GNR Camping World, Winnipeg, Manitoba.
- Henry Epp of Country RV, Kelowna, British Columbia.
- Ron Hall of Eldorado RV, Lethbridge, Alberta.
- David McKee of The Hitch House, Shanty Bay, Ontario.
Each year, the RVDA of Canada, in conjunction with RV Lifestyle Magazine and Dealer News, invites nominations from across Canada for the Canadian RV Dealer of the Year Award. The award is dedicated to the memory of the late Walt Paseska, founder of Walt’s Trailer Sales in Headingley, Manitoba, in recognition of his many years of commitment and dedication to the RV industry. Since established in 1989 by Camping Canada Magazine, this award has been presented to individuals who share Walt’s enthusiasm and commitment, in recognition of their long-term contribution to the RV lifestyle, and commitment to the community as a whole.
The award is presented to a candidate who has:
- Demonstrated long-term dedication to the RV industry and promotion of the RV lifestyle by the acting dealer principal of a recognized full service RV dealership
- Shown commitment and participation in the RVDA at the provincial or national level;
- Been recognized by customers and peers as a person with the highest integrity and credibility in both work and personal life, and
- Made a contribution to their community.
Following are highlights of some of the developments announced at or reported to RVBUSINESS.com during this week’s National RV Trade Show in Louisville, Ky.
RVIA Releases 3 Videos
The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association has released three new videos in conjunction with the 48th Annual National RV Trade Show underway this week in Louisville, Ky. One of the videos new appears on the RVBUSINESS.com homepage.
RVIA Welcomes Chinese Delegation
A delegation sponsored by the Department of Commerce in Beijing, China, is visiting the 48th Annual National RV Trade Show today and Wednesday in Louisville, Ky.
The Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) will host a reception for the Chinese delegation tonight at the Kentucky Exposition Center. The Chinese will be meeting with U.S. vehicle manufacturers and suppliers. Tables have been set up and five interpreters have been hired to assist the attendees communicate with each other.
Some members of the delegation will be visiting the RV/MH Hall of Fame on Thursday in Elkhart, Ind., and visiting one or more RV plants.
RVIA President Richard Coon said there is great potential for the RV industry to enter China. Coon said the Chinese consumers have more disposable income and leisure time than ever before and are interested in learning more about the RV lifestyle.
Newmar Adds MCD Innovations Shades
MCD Innovations announced that Newmar Corp. is installing MCD shades in their 2011 Dutch Star and newly redesigned 2011 Ventana models. The windshield and driver/passenger shades in the Ventana replace the visors and curtains that have been installed in the past. The Dutch Star model also includes the cockpit shade system. In addition, American Duo house shades are available for these models.
Also used in both coaches on the driver’s side window is the innovative, patent-pending MCD SwayShade, the unique roller shade configuration that travels forward as it is pulled down so as to cover the lower front corner of the driver’s window, which a normal shade cannot do. Newmar specified this unique shade for both the Ventana and Dutch Star.
“With Newmar’s high standard of craftsmanship and their ability to lead the industry with their innovative products, we are pleased that they have selected the American Duo Shade System for two of their most popular coaches,” said MCD Innovations CEO Dave Townsley. “ We look forward to working with Newmar and providing their customers the best the industry has to offer in solar protection, outward visibility and privacy.”
“Newmar is constantly looking to partner with the best Suppliers in the Industry to provide our discerning customers with the quality products that they deserve in their motorhome. MCD American Duo Shades will be a valued addition to our Dutch Star and Ventana Diesel Brands,” said Kyle McCrary, director of luxury motorhomes and product design at Newmar Corp.
Accidents Hamper Show Traffic
Multiple accidents on Interstate 65 southbound near Eastern Parkway just north of the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky., site of this week’s National RV Trade Show, have closed two lanes this morning, a MetroSafe Communications supervisor told the Louisville Courier-Journal.
There were reports of injuries, but the supervisor did not know the severity or how many people were injured. A Trimarc incident report said six vehicles were involved.
All southbound lanes were closed for about an hour after one accident was reported about 5:40 a.m., but the two left lanes were re-opened just before 7 a.m.
No further details were immediately available.
Morin Named Canadian Dealer of the Year
Daniel Morin, owner of Roulottes Desjardins, St-Jerome, Quebec, was named Canadian RV Dealer of the Year by the Recreation Vehicle Dealers of Canada (RVDA of Canada).
Morin’s award was announced and presented Monday night (Nov. 29) during the Canada Night Dinner held at the Galt House in Louisville. Morin is a 41-year veteran of the RV industry. He was a founding member of the RVDA of Quebec, past chairman of the RVDA of Canada and past director of Go RVing Canada board.
Thor Falls Short of Analysts’ Forecasts
Thor Industries Inc. fell short of profit forecasts provided by Wall Street analysts who follow the giant RV company.
Thor said Monday its fiscal first-quarter profit edged higher amid a 21% jump in revenue, Businessweek reported.
The company reported net income of $23.7 million, or 44 cents a share, for the three months ended Oct. 31. That compares with net income of $23.4 million, or 42 cents a share, in the prior-year quarter.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected earnings of 54 cents a share, on average.
Revenue increased to $606.7 million from $502.6 million a year earlier.
Thor said RV sales rose 30 percent versus the same quarter last year, while bus segment sales declined 11 percent.
Peter Orthwein, Thor’s chairman, said gross margins were affected by increased discounting as dealers remained cautious entering the slowest season of the year.
Shares in Thor Industries rose 14 cents to $33.78 in aftermarket trading after falling 91 cents, or 2.6 percent, to $33.64 during the regular session.